Royal Challengers Bangalore, on Monday, thrashed Kolkata Knight Riders by 82 runs to move to the third spot in the points table. The win was RCB’s fifth win of the season in seven games so far.
Batting first, RCB posted a daunting total of 194 for 2 in the allotted 20 overs. Openers Devdutt Padikkal and Aaron Finch gave the team another good start by adding 67 runs for the first wicket before the former was dismissed for 32. Finch was dismissed for 47 before Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers joined hands.
The duo shared an unbeaten stand of 100 runs to power their side to the huge total. De Villiers was the destructor-in-chief while Kohli, who was struggling to play his shots, looked content to play the role of the second fiddle. De Villiers blasted 73 off just 33 balls while Kohli remained unbeaten on 33 off 28 balls.
In reply, KKR finished on 112 for 9. The Dinesh Karthik-led side never really looked in contention to chase down the huge total as it kept losing wickets at regular intervals. In-form Shubman Gill top-scored for the side with 34 while the likes of Tom Banton, Nitish Rana, Eoin Morgan, Dinesh Karthik and Andre Russell failed to deliver with the bat.
Virat Kohli’s reaction:
Speaking at the end of the match, Virat Kohli expressed delight at the way his teammates performed and executed the plans. He was also quick to single out ‘super-human’ AB de Villiers for special praise.
“They’ve played good cricket in this IPL. Coming here, it was important to get the right start. Great to see individuals step up when the team requires. Bowling unit, with Morris coming in, looks all the more potent. Very happy. At the toss the pitch didn’t have the usual Sharjah sheen. Knew the wicket was going to get slower and slower. Barring one super-human, everyone struggled on that pitch. Talk was around 165-170.
“Preparation was really good. Three week camp helped us. Have clarity of plans. Know exactly what we want to do on the field. All depends on the mindset. It’s very positive. If your bowling unit is strong, you have a great chance of going deep in the tournament,” said Kohli.
Speaking about de Villiers, Kohli said his RCB teammate’s knock was special as he stated the team managed to post 194 only because of the South African. He concluded by saying that he does want to be complacent after the good start in the tournament.
“Was unbelievable. I thought I had a few balls under my belt so I’ll start striking. But he came in and hit his third ball nicely. On a pitch like that, only AB can do that. It was a special knock. We got 195 purely because of the genius of that man. Always things you can reflect on and say you can improve on these things. All about taking this momentum forward. Don’t want to be complacent,” he said.
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